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 Post subject: Miners' Descent After Strike Is Broken
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 6:35 am 
Miner
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In the scene near the end of Act 2 when the miners, shoulder-to-shoulder and wearing their helmet lights, descend altogether down into the mine, the touring set has a kind of mine elevator door that descends from above the mens' heads, blocking off all of the head lamp glare as the singing voices diminish in volume and the mechanism roars.

For the permament theatres, e.g. Vic, Imperial do the sets have platforms that actually lower the ensemble chorus below stage level as if to simulate an elevator descending underground?

For the touring set, if the elevator door had instead 'risen' from floor level and ascended to eventually to cut off the headlamps, perhaps it might have conjured the illusion of the minors descending.

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 Post subject: Re: Miners' Descent After Strike Is Broken
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 8:02 am 
Billy

Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 5:52 pm
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Location: (near) London
At the Victoria Palace the platform the miners stand on actually descends into the 'vaults' and with the accompanying noise of the mine shaft it is most effective.


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 Post subject: Re: Miners' Descent After Strike Is Broken
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:11 pm 
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Billy
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It was the same on Broadway. But since touring venues cannot be customized with traps, the set was redesigned to give the effect without a trap. In fact, the London and Broadway productions also have/had hydraulic platforms that rise from below the stage for the kitchen set and Billy's bedroom.

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 Post subject: Re: Miners' Descent After Strike Is Broken
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 9:31 pm 
George
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I believe the Mirvish Theatre in Toronto was the same, the miners actually were lowered down below the stage. I'm not 100% though cause its actually been a couple years since the show was in Toronto.


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 Post subject: Re: Miners' Descent After Strike Is Broken
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 9:59 pm 
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Billy
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No, I am pretty sure they were not lowered. Just as in the current touring production, there was a blackout curtain that slowly descended in front of them, accompanied by the sound of a pit elevator in operation. The curtain has the Durham Miners Association's banner on it.

When the miners turn around, by the way, the headlamps you see are augmented by more lights behind them. The Mirvish did not use any traps that I was aware of. What that version of the tour did use, however, was radio controlled wagons for the bedroom and the kitchen table/chairs, so the actors did not have to move any of that scenery; it moved on its own.

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 Post subject: Re: Miners' Descent After Strike Is Broken
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 10:20 pm 
Miner
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ERinVA wrote:
It was the same on Broadway. But since touring venues cannot be customized with traps, the set was redesigned to give the effect without a trap. In fact, the London and Broadway productions also have/had hydraulic platforms that rise from below the stage for the kitchen set and Billy's bedroom.


Seems to me that Miss Saigon had one of the more complex hydraulic set ups, tho' I only read about it never saw it. A Huey helicopter fuselage as I recall.

I thought the manually hauled touring set changes were all pretty cleverly executed (bedroom) ... The flow was never broken. I thought I would be disappointed by the lack of hydraulics but wasn't in the least.

A couple of times I was worried about how easy it would be to crush a finger or toe either in the hinged bed frame banging down or one of the riot shields striking the floor during Angry Dance on Billy's foot. But obviously everyone is super safety conscious. A Billy with broken metatarsals would be disasterous in more ways than one. Mitchell had a bit of trouble getting the bed back down horizontal just prior to jumping down over the stairs. One of the latches holding the steel bedframe up vertically didn't fully release or something for about two beats of music but he managed to get it down and catch up to the song as he hit the floor and squirmed underneath the apparatus, a real trouper.

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 Post subject: Re: Miners' Descent After Strike Is Broken
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 4:58 pm 
George
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Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2010 10:42 pm
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Location: Ontario, Canada
ERinVA wrote:
The Mirvish did not use any traps that I was aware of.

That is right. Everything rolled on from the sides, motorized. A black curtain descended, representing the elevator.


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